Former NFL star and pseudo WWE insider Adam Carriker joins the Turnbuckle Weekly with Chuck Carroll.
The show is over. It’s time to move on.
Free yourself of the burden that is known as The Attitude Era. Say a prayer and post a 140-character eulogy using the hashtag #RIPMondayNightWar.
It was a six-year run to which all professional wrestling standards will forever be held.
But it’s gone. And it’s been gone for 13 years. Let it go.
If you haven’t moved on, there’s a good chance you’re one of the “smart fans” crying on the Internet every week about how WWE is messing up and John Cena is the worst wrestler of all time.
Hustle, loyalty, and respect would have no place beside Stone Cold Steve Austin, right? Yeah, about that…
Take a deep breath and cut the cord.
Now, here’s a spot of good news to help you cope with the loss of the beloved golden era of wrestling.
There’s a new era dawning in the WWE chock full of promising Superstars. No, they can’t replace the likes of Degeneration X, Mick Foley, Undertaker, and the Rock, but with solid writing and character development, they can forge a bond with a new generation of fans. Or at the very least, they’ll be able to provide better entertainment on Monday nights.
“Cena has probably one more main event at WrestleMania in him and he probably won’t even be the main event,” said WWE aficionado and former first-round NFL draft pick Adam Carriker.
He’s thinking relative newcomer Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar will get top billing at WrestleMania 31 next year.
Questioning why a football player has an opinion about the squared circle that matters?
Carriker co-hosted a pro wrestling radio show for two years while starting at left defensive end for the Washington Redskins. The uniqueness of the show coupled with his stature afforded him the opportunity to befriend a number of the top stars in the wrestling business.
As for Cena’s impending demise, Carriker pointed to facts given by Paul Heyman not long ago. The Rock’s epic run was essentially 3.5 years and the quintessential Stone Cold run on top was only slightly longer.
Cena has been the face of WWE for better than a decade. His time is now, but the clock’s ticking rapidly toward midnight.
“He’s been doing it for a long time. I think there’s going to be a new face,” Carriker said.
He points to the success of Reigns, Daniel Bryan, Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, Bray Wyatt, Rusev, and WWE Divas Champion Paige.
“It comes to a point where every year at WrestleMania where it can’t be the Triple H’s, the Undertakers, the Rocks, the Brocks coming back and being the main eventers,” he said. “You need your current every week people out there being the main event and main attraction. I think that’s going to be what starts to happen here on out.”
And the fans are ready and waiting.
I caught up with Carriker as WWE rolls toward Night of Champions where the undercard featuring the new crop of talent is perhaps generating as much buzz as the main event rematch between Cena and Brock Lesnar.
You can listen to the entire interview above. Here is a look at everything we discussed:
* Can WWE thrive with Brock Lesnar as a part-time champion?
* How a part-time champion could hurt the build to WrestleMania
* Roman Reigns in the main event at WrestleMania 31?
* Finally, a new era with memorable Superstars in WWE
* One thing WWE is missing right now
* WWE recycling old story lines
* What happens to WWE if TNA goes out of business
And for those who just want a couple quotes… you’re missing out on the best stuff, but here you go:
Roman Reigns as the new face of WWE
I think he’s just going to build and build and build and maybe win the Royal Rumble this year. He set the record for most men eliminated last year, beating Kane’s old record. I think it’s going to set up for the new face of the company when Roman Reigns beats Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania.
What’s missing in WWE?
I think they’re missing an edge. I’m not even talking about Attitude Era-type edge. I’m talking about, I’ve seen this storyline 22 times before… Their product is almost a little bland and it’s being infused with new blood, but I feel like there needs to be some new twists, some new story lines and things of that nature. Things we haven’t seen before, which is hard to do in wrestling.
Is TNA going out of business what’s best for WWE’s business?
If you’ve got nobody pushing to make you better, you’re going to continue to see the same thing over and over. I don’t think it would be good at all. I think when you’re being pushed and you’ve gotta get better, that’s when things are much more fun to watch, wrestling is at its peak, and that’s probably when the most money is made for the wrestling companies.
The full interview can be heard at the top of the page.
Chuck Carroll is former pro wrestling announcer and referee turned sports media personality. He once appeared on Monday Night RAW when he presented Robert Griffin III with a WWE title belt in the Redskins locker room.
Follow him on Twitter @TheChuckCarroll.